The New York Times Magazine has published an in-depth report by Adrian Chen on Russian disinformatzyia in the Internet Age. The piece opens a window on the extremely dark and widespread use of well-paid Internet "trolls" who use social media and online outlets (and even non-virtual art exhibits) to wreak havoc not only on public opinion, but on reality itself, both inside and outside Russia, very much including here in the USA.
One troll-goal in Russia, according to a Russian anti-corruption activist, is to drive bona fide political debate away from "trolled" Internet forums. “The point is to spoil [the Internet], to create the atmosphere of hate, to make it so stinky that normal people won’t want to touch it,”
I confess this observation about the trolls' mission rang a bell with me personally. The cabal against American Betrayal -- "trolls" from here on out -- has so many times attacked American Betrayal by falsifying the contents of the book that they have created a discernible pattern of deception that many have compared to a Soviet-style "disinformation campaign."
The repetitiousness of such disinformation regarding the (verifiable) contents of my book seems designed, in the words of the Russian quoted above, to "make it so stinky that normal people won't want to touch it."
The most recent assault, published by National Review and rebutted at Breitbart News (because National Review, joining the debate-killers at American Thinker and the academic journal National Security and Intelliegence, wouldn't print my rebuttal) is only the latest toxic burst of disinformation.
The good news, of course, is that the trolls never fool anyone who has actually read American Betrayal.
Here is a Letter to the Editor of National Review that makes this point much better than I can.
From: Howard Glickstein
Date: June 5, 2015 at 1:09:48 PM HST
To: "firstname.lastname@example.org" <email@example.com>
Subject: Diana West, American Betrayal and your destruction of your credibility and integrity
I value National Review for Andrew McCarthy, Victor Davis Hanson and many other authors. That is why it is so dismaying and disheartening to have followed the consistently dishonest treatment NR has given to Diana West's book, even now, two years later.
Disagreement is one thing. Misrepresentation is quite another. I have been a litigator for 36 years (AV peer rated). I have read the evidence: the book, all the pieces in NR, and Ms. West's replies, including the ones you wouldn't publish or buried.
You have knowingly and repeatedly published as facts demonstrable falsehoods that any fact checking intern would catch.
This is not a close call. Dozens of lies are not an accident.
NR's conduct is unforgivable.
To see your publication become an exemplar of the Big Lie dishonors William F. Buckley's accomplishments, integrity and memory.
I expected more from Rich Lowry.
This doesn't pass the smell test. It reeks.
The inescapable question: since you're lying about this, what else are you lying to me about?
Attorney at Law